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Remo D
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Post by Remo D » Sun May 22, 2011 9:35 pm

Okay, straight up. If my son hadn't wanted to see this so badly, I would probably have skipped it. I'm kind of sort of burning out on blockbuster superhero movies--particularly with "summer" starting earlier every year. And with the highly-anticipated IRON MAN 2 turning out to be somewhat less than the sum of its parts...? And THE GREEN HORNET...? Let's face it--these days I'm a hell of a lot more impressed with movies like KICK-ASS and SUPER, and I never had a particularly large investment in Thor--even in the comics.

And the trial of GETTING to THOR? The PREVIEWS we had to slog through? Good grief. SUPER 8 for the umpteenth time. COWBOYS AND ALIENS for the double-umpteenth time. CAPTAIN AMERICA for the lord-knows-how-many-teenth time. GREEN LANTERN yet again. Wait--what's this? COLOMBIANA? A new Luc Besson-affiliated thriller? I'm interested! I'm interested! But then... good grief, it's X-FIRST CLASS for the zillionth time! YAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHH!!!!!! MAKE IT STOP! MAKE IT STOP!

Oh, I'm sorry. THOR? Thankfully, it was actually pretty good. Chris Hemsworth is quite agreeable and engaging in the title role, and Tom Hiddleston does remarkably well as Loki (though I kept expecting him to burst into Alan Cummings schtick, it never happened). And naturally, we get dependable Anthony Hopkins-ing from Anthony Hopkins (though he spends too much of the film in a coma, submerged in an orange bubble-thingy). Natalie Portman, however, is pretty much wasted in a role they could have given to pretty much anybody (no offense to the actress herself, of course).

The first movement of the film is by far the best. Thor, angered at having his coronation rudely interrupted by the Frost Giants, gathers up his buddies and races off for an unauthorized confrontation, with the consequences we saw a million times in the previews (there I go again). Still and all, the buildup is genuinely fantastic and exciting and was NOT spoiled by the pre-hype.

Once Thor is de-immortalized on Earth, it's still good fun, and there are, indeed, some great laughs (I especially liked it when he crashed a pet store and demanded a horse). Look--I won't bore you with the story, as the story eventually bored me just a little bit. SHIELD gets involved (of course, as this is an AVENGERS set-up movie, with the requisite SLJ cameo after the end credits), palace intrigue continues on Asgaard, clever Earthlings figure out the link between Nordic mythology and modern science, and Loki eventually gets around to unleashing the Destroyer (also beautifully realized).

We know that director Kenneth Branagh loves his Shakespearean spectacle, and he handles the pomp, circumstance and action with his customary bravado. But if I may be so bold... his HAMLET was twice as long but also twice as thrilling.

Still, don't take that as a "no" vote from this corner. THOR does its job well enough--if it's another plunge into the Marvel Universe you seek, by all means jump in. Just save yourself a few bucks and see it flat. I've drawn the line when it comes to 3-D conversion jobs, as you well know. Branagh shot THOR in 2-D, and if it's good enough for him, then it's good enough for me.

And if you're still on the fence? My son will turn twelve next month. And he loved it. Ask your inner eleven-year-old what he thinks.

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Darth Tanner
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Re: Thor

Post by Darth Tanner » Mon May 23, 2011 5:48 am

LOL I saw this when it first came out a few weeks ago and never got around to talking about it. Of course I decided to save the few bucks and see it "flat" since I heard the 3-D in this wasn't very good. I thought the movie was alright as well, but it was definitely on the lower rungs of the "superhero movie" spectrum IMO. Yes there were some funny moments and a good cast, but I was really let down by the lackluster action scenes. I think Kenneth Branagh did a great job at handling the dramatic elements and there were some scenes in THOR that reminded me of a "greek tragedy" for some reason:) Chris Hemsworth and Anthony Hopkins were both great as was Stellan Skarsgaard. Natalie Portman's role was indeed limited and she seemed like an odd fit for this movie, but she still did an okay job. I was really disappointed though that Rene Russo (who I liked watching back in the day) was wasted in a "do nothing" role that limited her to just a few scenes. She could have easily been taken out of the movie and nobody would have noticed. At the end of the day the movie was still entertaining enough for me, but I just didn't enjoy it as much as some of the other Marvel adaptations. I hate to admit that I liked SCREAM 4 a little bit better than THOR.

As for the trailers, I have to say that I'm really excited about SUPER 8 (just wish the damned movie would get here already) and am also looking forward to CAPTAIN AMERICA and X-MEN: FIRST CLASS. But I can't say I'm too interested in GREEN LANTERN. The trailer for this didn't look good at all and the thought of Ryan Reynolds playing the title character really sapped my enthusiasm. But I initially said the same thing about Robert Downey Jr. and IRON MAN before seeing the movie, so maybe I should see GREEN LANTERN before passing final judgement:)

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